I’m sure you’ve seen great athletes and entertainers perform at their highest levels. They do something that most business people rarely do – they practice. Practice is considered a time waster and threat in business settings. It doesn’t happen. I think it’s due to a common belief that you don’t have time to practice; there’s simply too much to get done.
Just imagine expecting your career to get better without practice for a moment. If you believe that you have no time, it means NO time to work on your game, your business, your processes, your skill sets, your team’s capacity and more. You’d remain static on a trajectory to the same and end up discouraged or exhaust yourself. So to counter this no-practice dynamic, we teach entrepreneurs in the VIP Coach how to add weekly practice as an essential element that their earning power and free time depend on completely.
What does our business “practice model” consist of? Four key activities:
How important are these activities to you?
Two activities that compose your best work are innovation and optimization. Innovation happens best when you’re with clients and asking them what they want most from you.Indeed, their comments will tell you the secret to creating a unique process in the marketplace that no other competitor can match. This is because instead of studying your competitors, you’re tapping into your best clients’ opportunities and preferences. When you gather these gems, you begin to crystallize new capabilities to bring to your current and new clients. New sales and opportunities then become available. This activity of building capacity is like adding a new fixture to a race car.
You go into meetings prepared, and you completely increase your chances for a higher result.Preparation isn’t just making an agenda or master a talk-track. It’s mentally rehearsing answers to expected and unexpected questions. I call this capacity “clock-speed”. When you have options in your hip pocket, like Karate Kid, ready to counter measure, you’re able to lead conversations and keep them value driven. Preparation is also about connecting with meaning and context around important conversations coming up. You might marinate on the human beings you’re about to meet. What is their biggest danger? What is their current reality? How about their strengths? What are they trying to do? Using empathic listening and sincere interest, you begin to act from a place of how the other persons are positioned. Value creation always begins with what makes a person emotional and what has meaning for them. It evokes the contribution you sense is necessary from you, and what intention you have to actualize it.
Delegation isn’t a hallway process when you communicate in a drive-by manner. It’s about precise communication. We teach our coaching clients how to be ninja delegates. They love replacing themselves, because it’s about bringing others who help us into their personal gifts as they meet your support needs.
Do you know your support needs? You have activities that don’t energize you and don’t embody your superior skill sets. These activities, if continued, are dangerous time and energy wasters that choke your innovation and passion to grow. So you must continue to put wooden stakes in the vampires that suck your time dry. Step one is to make a list of these items. Second, identify who the most favorable candidates are that will resonate with taking these off your plate. It’s important that the direction you delegate in is voluntary energy.I became aware of this when one of my assistant coach’s began asking me if she could do that same task again. I knew I had her unique ability active in the work I was delegating.
When you delegate, communicate a purpose, process, and payoff. Furnish why the task is important to you and your organization and anchor it to a bigger picture or outcome. Second, tell and show how the steps in the process works. Next, have the other person tell and show you to retain it better. Then, come to terms on a payoff that matters to the other person. One of the most significant aspects is getting them closer to working from their unique ability.
You depend on gathering quality information from your back-office. During maintenance days, staff meetings are critical to get a pulse on your people, your metrics, and your current reality. As a work-group, identify seven to nine impact areas that your future will depend on most to happen. These could be areas like: closing new business, customer service, marketing drip, social media story-telling, hiring top performers, and alliance practices. You get the idea here. Then, consider who in your organization is most influential as a ‘watch-tower’ of these processes and structures trending positively and on-track. It behooves you to check in 15 minutes with each ‘watch-tower’ during your maintenance day to make key adjustments and position your most important delegation efforts.
All of us have messes at one time or another in our business path. These are items that need repair and clean up. When we depend on compliances that break down, we interrupt our performance. When we procrastinate on doing our taxes, they become more consuming later on. Messes need immediate action. Whatever you’re tolerating or putting up with is asking for your attention. What is backlogged? What is it that you’re constantly running out of? What needs clean up and repair? What environments are not supporting you – your office, home, car, or anything you depend upon to get things done and operate optimally? Where should you create a super reserve of anything you run out of often? So in a nutshell, identify three toleration’s, three environments, and three backups or reserves that you can proactively clean up so that you increase confidence and lessen fear.
How many maintenance days per month? Eight! When you take these days, you begin to experience greater free day periods to be untied to details and decoupled from burdensome worries and thoughts.Your family begins to notice how much more present you are than before. And you begin to anticipate how you want to feel on your free days, which drives your intensity to prepare, delegate, clean up, and optimize. Your maintenance days are the bridge to building a fantastic life as your business grows.
And as your income heightens, you have these days squared away to meet the demands of all the new responsibilities and details dropped on you from new business. You’ll get ahead by having the people, systems, and structures in place already before the details ambush your energy, time, and resources.
Copyright 2013 John Davidson